Lady Bucks win series over Columbia State, including extra-inning comeback

Monday, April 2, 2018
Motlow softball player Madison Hopkins waits for the pitch during the Lady Bucks series against Columbia State last weekend, a series that Motlow won three games to one. Hopkins, a freshman from Lewisburg, had five hits and drove in three runs during the series and is hitting .345 for the season.
Photo by Jeff Reed Photography

LYNCHBURG, TN (April 2, 2018) – Kendall Durard allowed only three earned runs in 26 innings pitched and the Motlow Lady Bucks won their fourth consecutive TCCAA conference series by beating visiting Columbia State three games to one last weekend, playing two games at Moore County High School and two at Lady Bucks Field.

The Lady Bucks (16-14, 13-7) have now won 12 of their previous 16 games, all conference games, and have solidified their place at No. 4 in the TCCAA standings. Motlow will hit the road for their next two series, traveling to Jackson State April 6 & 7 and Volunteer State the following weekend. The next home series is April 20 & 21, when Walters State visits.

Due to heavy rains the previous day, Friday’s first two games of the series were played at Moore County High School. The Lady Bucks won game one 2-1, then dropped the nightcap 4-2. Saturday’s action moved back to Lady Bucks Field, where the home team won game one 6-5 with a pair of runs in the bottom of the tenth inning, and then finished off the series with a 4-1 victory.

Friday’s opener saw Motlow trail 1-0 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning, when they scored twice to open the series with a win. Madison Woodruff and Breanna Owens opened up the inning with singles and advanced a base on a Durard sacrifice. With two outs, Ciera Dobbins drove in both runners with a single to right field.

Durard tossed a complete game, scattering six hits and allowing one run with six strikeouts.

In game two the Lady Chargers scored single runs in the first and second innings before Motlow tied the score with two runs in the third. Columbia State added two runs in the fifth but Motlow couldn’t answer, giving the visitors their only win of the series. The Lady Bucks hurt themselves on defense, committing four errors during the contest.

Madison Hopkins had a pair of hits for Motlow, and Durard pitched well again, going the distance and allowing only seven hits with five strikeouts. Only one of the four runs was earned by the Lady Chargers.

Saturday’s first game was a 10-inning thriller that saw Columbia take a 3-0 lead in the fourth before Motlow came back with four runs in the fifth. The Lady Chargers tied it with a run in the sixth and neither team scored again until Columbia took the lead with a run in the top of the tenth. Motlow never quit though, scoring twice in the tenth to get the victory.

After nine innings in softball, a runner gets placed on second base to start the inning. For Motlow in the tenth, that runner was Hopkins. Woodruff reached first on a ground ball, sending Hopkins to third. Durard drove in the tying run with a single to left, scoring Hopkins and sending Woodruff to second. Owens then loaded the bases with a single and Jennifer Corbitt drove in the winning run by drawing a walk.

Durard and Owens split time in the circle. Owens got the start and went five innings, allowing eight hits and three runs. Durard pitched the final five innings, giving up six hits and two runs.

The series finale saw Durard pitch perhaps her best game of the series, allowing just two hits with seven strikeouts and zero runs unearned. She also starred at the plate, getting three hits and driving in two runs.

With the Lady Bucks leading 2-1, Motlow added two insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth. Caroline Sarris opened the inning with a single, and after one out Ariel McAtee reached on an error. With two outs, Hopkins came through with a single through the box, scoring both Sarris and McAtee. Motlow had 10 hits for the game, with Durard and Hopkins each driving in two runs.

Visit the official website of Motlow Athletics at MotlowSports.com for rosters, schedules, stats and more. Interact with Motlow Athletics on social media at MotlowSports.